Bipartisan Support for National Cord Blood Inventory

Bipartisan Support for National Cord Blood Inventory

Vital legislation is getting bipartisan support for National Cord Blood Inventory to reauthorize funding for cord blood and bone marrow programs for an additional 5 years. 



Bipartisan Support for National Cord Blood Inventory

Cord Blood is a Vital Natural Resource

As an expectant parent, you need to understand what policies and facilities are being put in place right now having a direct effect on the medical future of you and your child.

Did you realize that a national public cord blood bank already exists in the USA ? It is called the National Cord Blood Inventory (NCBI). It is administered by the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP)–the same people who run “Be the Match” and one of our partners in cord blood education. Over 30 years old, the NMDP now manages a registry of 11 million adult volunteer bone marrow donors and 193,000 donated cord blood units. Through their international network they have access worldwide to even more–because, as the name suggests, bone marrow and cord blood BOTH need to be MATCHED to the recipient. These cord blood donations have already been used in marvelous ways (learn about the diseases treated with cord blood).

Did you realize that current government funding and policies are not sufficient for the growing needs of the cord blood community?  Because of the MATCHING required for cord blood transplants, it is vitally important that our National Cord Blood Inventory represent a large quantity of donors and, even more importantly, a broad range of ethnic groups. To build a high-quality bank, the NCBI need donors — the right policies will help us get those donors, especially donors from diverse ethnic backgrounds. However, to properly save these cord blood donations the NCBI needs money — the right priorities in government will ensure that these programs get the funding they need.

Recently, Cord Blood Association President Dr. Joanne Kurtzberg and NMDP Chief Executive Officer Jeff Chell both testified before the House in support of re-authorizing the Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Re-authorization Act of 2015 (H.R. 2820).  According to the article recently published by the Cord Blood Association (read the full article here). . .

H.R. 2820 was introduced by a bipartisan group of lawmakers led by Reps. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Doris Matsui (D-CA). It would authorize $23 million per year for the National Cord Blood Inventory from 2016 through 2020, and $30 million per year for the C.W. Bill Young Transplant Program over those same years. CBA leaders are working with members of the Senate to ensure that similar legislation is introduced in that chamber in the near future.

The fact that this legislation has bipartisan support for the National Cord Blood Inventory demonstrates how non-controversial cord blood actually is. . . as the Cord Blood Association reminds us on their website, “Cord blood biology recognizes no political boundaries.”  Cord blood is matched to recipients worldwide and shipped internationally everyday to help people get the treatment they need. However, this is not done without difficulty and Dr. Kurtzberg also spoke about the need for policy change regarding the difficulty in opening public cord blood banks saying. . .

“The process of obtaining and maintaining a license has been challenging for the public banks to date,” Dr. Kurtzberg said. “Many of the regulations, created for drug manufacturing, are not easily applied to manufacturing of cord blood units.”

Indeed, it is time for change. We are in a privileged position as adults to really make a difference for the next generation. We need to lay the groundwork now in governments around the world to make sure that the right policies and funding are put in place as well as supported on a routine basis — making the preservation of cord blood a new standard of care for all parents.

Would you like to show your support for this legislation?  Please write your representative.

Do you have questions about donating cord blood? Follow our step-by-step guide on cord blood.

Save the Cord Foundation is a proud member of the Cord Blood Association

Cord Blood Association

Source: Cord Blood Association

July is Cord Blood Awareness Month Across the Nation

July is Cord Blood Awareness Month Across the Nation

July is Cord Blood Awareness Month Across the Nation and we are proud to support our friends at BE THE MATCH (National Marrow Donor Program) in their efforts to reach expectant parents across the nation with useful facts and tips on why and how to save a newborn’s cord blood.

As an expectant parent, we are bombarded with information! It is nearly impossible to decifer the medical terms and really understand what options we have in terms of doctors, facilities, pre- and post-partum care. This is why Save the Cord Foundation exists. We want to guide you through this process of storing your baby’s cord blood.  We want to explain how this fits into your birthing process without dispruption to you or your baby. We want to help you understand why it is important to not throw this natural resource away and then learn about options in your area to save your newborn’s cord blood either publicly or privately.  We want to help you, the expectant parents, understand how valuable your baby’s cord blood is and make sure that it is not just thrown away (around 95% of cord blood is thrown away currently as medical waste). Unfortunately, it is often the parent who must ask about donating or privately storing cord blood as this topic is not commonly brought up in birthing consultations. This is why it is important for parents to educate themselves and understand their options.

We loved this very honest and straight-forward interview with Donna Regan, Director at the Cord Blood Bank at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center, posted recently as part of National Cord Blood Awareness Month on Channel 5 KSDK:

Learn more about donating your child’s cord blood by contacting Save the Cord Foundation or BE THE MATCH (NMDP)

Be the Match - Cord Blood Donation Nationwide

Be the Match – Cord Blood Donation Nationwide

This is a useful guide for parents from BE THE MATCH regarding the birth process of donating cord blood:  How to Donate Cord Blood

If you are considering donation, please remember that there are certain criteria which must be met in terms of your health and the timing of your pregnancy. To learn if you meet these criteria, click here.

CAPPA Childbirth Professionals Learning About Cord Blood

CAPPA Childbirth Professionals Learning About Cord Blood

CAPPA Childbirth Professionals were learning about cord blood at the recent International CAPPA Meeting (Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association) that was held July 10th-12th, 2015 in Tucson, Arizona.  Save the Cord Foundation attended the meeting as an exhibitor and educator.  Executive Director and Founder of Save the Cord Foundation, Charis Ober, was joined by Kristen Wilt, Cord Blood Collection Director from the Tucson Medical Center.
Birth Education discussions about Cord Blood

Birth Education discussions about Cord Blood

At this amazing gathering of childbirth and postpartum professionals, we shared basic information on cord blood and shared detailed information about the Arizona Public Cord Blood Program with the many doulas, childbirth educators, lactation educators and other health professionals in attendance.
The Arizona Public Cord Blood Program is a offered at four locations in Arizona:
The program is free of charge and has had 19 of it’s cord blood units go to life-saving transplants around the world. That is 19 lives saved!  We are so proud of the amazing work being done by the partners of this program.
Birth Education focused on Cord Blood

Birth Education focused on Cord Blood

Save The Cord Foundation would especially like to thank CAPPA for the opportunity to talk to so many of it’s members about giving life twice by saving cord blood.  We remain available to answer any questions your members may have about cord blood and look forward to joining you next time.
Are you a childbirth professional?  Contact us with your questions about cord blood and learn what options your expectant mothers have for storing their child’s cord blood either publicly or privately.

Showing Support for Team Agress

If you live in Arizona, you have probably noticed the cycling team, TEAM AGRESS, wearing our logo on their shirts and even talking about Save the Cord Foundation with the press. They are strong supporters of our mission at Save the Cord Foundation to educate parents about the life-saving benefits of cord blood.  We have partnered in various ways over the years because it is a good way for us to reach a new community of parents who have not otherwise heard of cord blood storage or perhaps never met someone whose life was saved by cord blood.

1st place winner Rick Ellwanger from Team Agress - Arizona State Road Race 2015

1st place winner Rick Ellwanger from Team Agress – Arizona State Road Race 2015

Team Agress are champions in more ways than one.  The team did amazingly well at the 2015 Arizona State Road Race with Rick Ellwanger claiming 1st place. Bravo!  They are also champions of the cord blood movement for helping us to get the word out to their fans — a community of parents and professionals that we would not have reached otherwise.

Thank you Team Agress for doing your part to encourage cord blood awareness!  We can’t wait to see the next race!

Cord Blood to Treat Autism & Other Brain Disorders: New Studies at Duke

Cord Blood to Treat Autism & Other Brain Disorders: New Studies at Duke

Cord Blood to Treat Autism & Other Brain Disorders: New Studies Launching at Duke

Cord blood to treat autism?

Cord blood to treat autism?


Duke Medicine is leading the way in cord blood research as their team of specialist prepare to undertake major studies to explore the use of umbilical cord blood to treat autism, stroke, cerebral palsy and related brain disorders.  The group was just awarded $15 million from the Marcus Foundation to support this research.

As stated by Duke Medicine News and Communications, . . .

The award from The Marcus Foundation, an Atlanta-based philanthropic organization, will fund the first two years of a planned five-year, $41 million project by Joanne Kurtzberg, MD, chief scientific and medical officer of Duke’s Robertson Cell and Translational Therapy Program, and Geraldine Dawson, PhD, director of the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Scienes.

A leader in cord blood research, Dr. Kurtzberg serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of Save the Cord Foundation and has participated in our Share the Science Series with Mediware.

Regarding this study, Dr. Kurtzberg was quoted saying. . .

“The whole program has enormous potential,” said Kurtzberg, who is also director of the Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplant Program and the Carolinas Cord Blood Bank. “Autism, stroke and cerebral palsy are all neurologic conditions that impair function and quality of life for these children and adults. If we can make that better, it will have a huge personal and societal impact.”

According to the article, the study itself will involve a variety of participants. . .

The project will consist of a series of clinical trials using umbilical cord blood cells to treat a total of 390 children and adults with autism, 100 children with cerebral palsy and 90 adults with stroke. Based on previous research, Kurtzberg and Dawson hypothesize that cord blood may promote repair of dysfunctional or damaged areas of the brain.



 $15 Million Award to Go Toward Exploring New Treatments for Autism, Other Brain Disorders


We are so happy to see that research to use cord blood to treat autism and other brain disorders is getting the funding it needs.  We look forward to learning more!


Could Cord Blood Prevent Type 1 Diabetes?

Could Cord Blood Prevent Type 1 Diabetes?

Could Cord Blood Prevent Type 1 Diabetes?

Yes, we hope so!  All eyes are on the CellCARE cord blood bank in Australia as they begin the WORLD’s FIRST clinical trial in this area.


According to CellCARE . . .

Australian researchers at the Institute of Endocrinology and Diabetes, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead (Institute), in a world first, will investigate the potential to prevent or delay the onset of type 1 diabetes in high-risk children using cord blood.

The CoRD study is aimed at children with a close relative with type 1 diabetes, who have their cord blood stored. The study is expected to take 5 years to complete with 400 – 600 participants required for screening and at least 20 participants proceeding to cord blood reinfusion.

Photo courtesy of CellCARE Australia and The Sydney Morning Herald

Photo courtesy of CellCARE Australia and The Sydney Morning Herald

This is truly exciting and once again reiterates the many possible uses for cord blood.

Please don’t throw your newborn’s cord blood away. Find a way to save it either publicly or privately. 

Want more information on how to do this?

If you are expecting, sign up for our BABY SHOWER REGISTRY and get all of the details you need about the process.
You will also be eligible for 1 free year of pregnancy magazine and lots of discounts and special offers from our partners.
Register today and get our free resource guide!

Share the Science – Talk Cellular Therapy with Kate Girard, Viacord

Share the Science – Talk Cellular Therapy with Kate Girard, Viacord

Share the Science!

Mediware and Save The Cord Foundation have teamed up to provide the cellular therapy industry with an exclusive speaker series to discuss the topics you and your peers are most interested in – including a cord blood webinar. Join us as we feature your colleagues to discuss their latest research, opinions on industry news and so much more.

This month in our Share the Science series with Kate Girard from ViaCord we discuss the many new applications for a newborn’s stem cells and we explore their regenerative qualities.  We get the facts on how cord blood stem cells are being used and the latest developments in research. This is your opportunity to learn first-hand about the progress being made in regenerative medicine using newborn stem cells from cord blood (a resource that is unfortunately more often thrown away as medical waste rather than preserved).  Girard explains how valuable this natural resource is to regenerative medicine.

Watch the full webinar here: 

Save the Cord Founation and Mediware present Kate Girard (Viacord) as part of the popular Share the Science series.

Save the Cord Founation and Mediware present Kate Girard (Viacord) as part of the popular Share the Science series.

Feel free to share this seminar with your colleagues and across social media. Join us again next month!

We would like to thank our partners for this particular edition of  Share the Science:  Kate Girard at ViaCord and the entire team at Mediware.

Join us next month for another exciting Share the Science webinar.  
Sign up for our newsletter to learn about upcoming topics in this series.




About Save the Cord Foundation

Save the Cord Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization, was established to promote awareness of the life-saving benefits of cord blood based on unbiased and factual information. The Foundation educates parents, health professionals and the general public about the need to preserve this valuable medical resource while providing information on both public cord blood donation programs and family cord blood banks worldwide.

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